Understanding "The RUGA Settlement Programme"

Have you heard of the RUGA settlements programme?

A new plan has been embarked on by the Federal Government last week to have a (Rural Grazing Area) RUGA settlements programme in every part of the country not only 12 states. RUGA is aimed at ending the insecurity arising from farmers-herder clashes in Nigeria which is meant to serve everyone involved in animal husbandry but most importantly to stop the roaming of cattle herders.

It is also aimed at increasing the quality of feed and access to animal care and private sector participation in commercial pasture production by way of investments. RUGA initiative is different from the National Livestock Transformation plan approved by the state governors under the auspices of the National Economic Council (NEC) chaired by Vice president Yemi Osinbajo.

The government claimed that the Ruga initiative was being politicised by those opposing it to create the impression of a hidden agenda and made it clear that the programme is voluntary. The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, announced that Buhari approved the Ruga settlement initiative earlier in the month of May.

Ogbeh said “We are going to build settlements where herders will live, grow their cattle and produce milk. The milk will be bought by a milking parlour thus preventing their wives from moving around with milk. This is especially to avert any conflict between the herders and the farmers.”.

The Federal Government has allocated the sum of N2.26bn in the 2019 budget for the development of national grazing reserves which is contained under the budget of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. Based on this analysis of this budget, there is no specific amount captured with the nomenclature of Ruga settlement.

It is true that government at the centre has gazetted lands in all states but because the idea is not to force this programme on anyone, the government has limited the take-off to the dozen states with valid requests.

A lot of people believe that this initiative means that the FG will deprive them of their land and hand it to the herdsmen, which may increase the conflict, while others think that this is the best step to resolve the conflicts as it will mean that we will see reduced open grazing by herders.

@Everybody What is your opinion on this matter? Are you in support of the RUGA settlement? #AreyouFORorAGAINST

Please share below.


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It is a welcomed initiative and as such the herders should be properly educated against trespassing as this has caused more damages to the country. Also, land owners should be compensated for deprivation of land for RUGA purpose.

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Excellent afternoon,

Concerning the RUGA issue, I can’t say much now except after studying policy then I can make a contribution based on critical assessment of the policy.


Best regards

Owolabi Waliu


RUGA…this whole thing makes no sense to me yet,I am from Benue State,I do not see why herds men that were killing our people and destroying our farms should be given space here! They should stay in their states and the billions allocated to them should be spent on that purpose. A farmer and a cattle rearer cannot be neighbors,the cows will eat the crops.Will they give Benue State lands to farm in any part of Nigeria because we are farmers and we don’t have enough land?Has the federal government developed any of our farm produce? But RUGA should be developed on our land…how much land do we have that we should give out? Some many question… As good as it sounds to those not here,we do not understand their “interest” yet.


This Ruga scheme is not the best for Nigeria. The FG are not sincere to themselves.

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I am strictly against this RUGA.
This present government is deficient on true integrity and trust.

To believe their explanation is to accept all the chains of lies and deceit they have been churning out since they came on board.

Besides, if it is not compulsory but voluntary, how come they are forcing and enforcing it on Benue State, even after the Governor has openly rejected it?

Well, based on this analysis, Ruga Settlement is a welcome development, but due to insufficient information from the central government plus the widely complained callous manner in which it handles the menace of the killer herdsmen, leaves everyone very suspicious and sceptical about any step taken by the the government on this herdsmen issue!


It’s good that they say is optional. Instead of having herdsmen whom we all know their violence tendencies around where I live, I rather pay double for cow meat. These are people who don’t even understand English language and resort to killing over a little provocation. In fact im just being fair in my description, otherwise I would have simply said they are a pro-terorist group.
We don’t want them in Akwa Ibom o.
I don’t trust the FG to believe the Ruga program is for good. If PMB can trick FG workers and claimed he signed N30,000 minimum wage into law just to deceive the people and later started fresh negotiation. I was a die hard Buharist, but this trick alone has killed my support for his Government.

Na cunning man die, cunning man bury am. Wrong time for good intentions. There are tensions and lots of agony in many States over terrorist herdsmen, kidnapping, banditry, raping etc. Establishment of rugs now may add to the insinuations and mutual apprehensions in the host States. Except force is applied, many States in the south may not subscribe.

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Cattle production by herdsmen is a personal business and it should be treated as one if there are defaulters they should face penalty THIS RUGA IS A PROOF THAT THE FULANI’S IS ABOVE THE GOVERNMENT OF NIGERIA AND WE DISAGREE TO THAT

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Thanks for this message.
But I want you to know that Ruga has been in existence for ages and did not stop herders/farmers clash, neither will it stop it now. I have been in the north for close to four decades and travelled round many states and its forests, in the course of mining. I have never seen Fulani settled permanently at a place. Ruga is just a temporary place to rest their cattle after daily grazing. Ruga is not a Ranch; Fulani will still take out his cattle for grazing. It will only give Fulani more access to people’s lands and it could lead to more fierce conflicts than never.

Let’s look before we leap…


Timothy Soladoye.


I do not support Ruga settlement, it is undemocratic. A land grabing strategy. Let the Fulani return to their land in the north where they belong. Their presence Here is already causing problem, they are messengers of kidnapping, rape, robbery, killings, we cannot leave with death!

Idiotic and insensitive, why is this Government involved in private Business activities? Are those cows not privately owned? Those Cows and their nomadic Herdsmen have innocent blood of Women, unborn Children and Farmers on their heads. All those that continue
to patronize and consume Fulani Beef have complicity in those atrocities. Another generational crime is taking place right before our eyes. Unfortunately, our leaders and security apparatus have all been compromised.

That’s great decision

The tone of the government on this issue is not sincere. Buhari has not hidden the fact that cows are more important to humans in both actions words and anyway he deems fit making his intention anti human.

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The cattle business is a private biz. How much is it contributing to the GDP of Nigeria?
The other tribes that are doing their chicken biz, fufu biz, etc, will they also enjoy the same allocation of funds & lands to aid their biz?

We have not really thought of the special interest the President himself is taking in this whole saga to see a hidden agenda behind it.

The security chiefs cannot do otherwise but the bidding of their principal. You mean to say our own military are so weak they cannot put an end to this menace? The

Police Mobile Force alone can cannot silent this group but you don’t do that else it is seen as mutiny, so what do you expect them to do?

This is land grabbing & should be resisted from this moment.


This scheme is a scarm aimed at establishing Fulani Colonies. Their occupation is being legalized. I’m a farmer looking for land to farm, What scheme is being established to provide free land for me.

Am totally in support